JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Jacksonville Jaguars left tackle Cam Robinson signed its franchise tender on Wednesday, guaranteeing him $16.7 million this season.
Jaguar general manager Trent Baalke and new coach Doug Pederson have repeatedly said they hope to sign Robinson on a long-term deal.
The former Alabama standout has started 61 games in five seasons since Jacksonville drafted him in 2017 with a 34th overall pick. But he was far from one of the best blind side protectors in the league.
Using the franchise tag for a second straight year was a surprising move considering the Jaguars drafted Walker Little last year with Stanford’s 45th overall, hoping to pair him with quarterback Trevor Lawrence for the foreseeable future bring together. Little started the final two games of the 2021 season and played well, leading some to believe Baalke would be moving from Robinson.
But with Robinson back for a sixth season, Little will compete with Jawaan Taylor in proper one-on-one combat. With Robinson, Little and Taylor in the mix, it’s unlikely the Jags would move in two weeks from Alabama’s Evan Neal or North Carolina State’s Iken Ekwonu with the No. 1 pick.
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Instead, they appear willing to go with a pass rusher — likely Michigan’s Aidan Hutchinson — or attempt to exit the top spot in hopes of garnering more draft capital.
Either way, the team’s offensive line will be revised.
Longtime center Brandon Linder retired after eight seasons riddled with injuries, and Jacksonville let starting supervisors Andrew Walker and AJ Cann go freehand.
The Jags signed five-time Pro Bowl guard Brandon Scherff to a three-year, $49.5 million deal with a $30 million guarantee. They also brought back versatile backup guard/tackle Will Richardson and longtime backup center Tyler Shatley.
But holes remain. The team is expected to use at least two of its 12 draft picks to bolster a line that allowed Lawrence to get sacked 32 times in 2021.
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